Scarborough chefs deliver cooked meals during the crisis

A group of Scarborough chefs, restaurant and café owners has come together to offer help to the vulnerable during the current coronavirus crisis.

Martin Hyde runs the new organisation

Community Kitchen Scarborough is delivering pre-cooked meals for reheating, and boxes of ingredients to enable meals to be cooked from scratch, to those in need in and around the town.

The organisation has raised £3,500 and provided more than 310 care packages in the first three weeks of operation.

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Martyn Hyde, who owns EatMe Café in Scarborough came up with the idea after closing his cafe at the start of lockdown.

He said: “The cafe had to close down and we put a message out asking if anyone wanted to help do something in the local community.

“We were inundated with offers from our friends and people in the community.”

He said marketing agency Scarborough Digital offered to build a website and, within a day, the Community Kitchen Scarborough online presence was born. Since then, the team have had dozens of messages from people who want to help during the crisis.

Each pack costs £4 to produce and contains a hot meal for reheating, cooked by Mr Hyde, and a food package of essentials.

He said people from all walks of life were using the service.

“It’s affecting everybody really,” he added.

Local companies, including supermarkets like Aldi and Morrisons, have provided food to the organisation.

“We’ve never asked outright for anything but lots of people have come to us to offer money and food donations,” Mr Hyde said.

He said the organisation has all the volunteers it currently needs but welcomes donations of food or money.

He added that there were lots of opportunities for people to help others in their communities.

“There are things everyone can do. Make a casserole for your next door neighbour and leave it outside their door,” he said.

Mr Hyde is not sure whether the cafe will reopen after the coronavirus pandemic is over.

“We’re still paying rent and bills but we obviously are not operating. We may never open again. We’re going to come out with huge amounts of debt,” he said.